An Iowa judge has temporarily blocked Iowa’s new six-week abortion ban, leaving the temporary injunction in place “until the court’s final adjudication on the merits in this matter.”
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) had signed the ban into law on Friday, and it took effect immediately.
During a Friday hearing, Polk County Judge Joseph Seidlin refused the request from Planned Parenthood’s lawyer to rule from the bench, saying it’d be “insulting” for him to “flippantly” rule without time to think it over.
The state’s lawyer, Iowa Assistant Attorney General Daniel Johnston, had argued that the standard for assessing abortion restrictions should be downgraded from the current “undue burden” standard.
Seidlin intervened to ask what his argument is if he does rule within the undue burden standard, but Johnson pivoted back to arguing for the lower “rational basis” standard. The judge also noted that the recent Iowa Supreme Court deadlock, which left a previous form of the six-week ban blocked, in effect affirmed a lower court decision that was made under the undue burden standard.
In his Monday ruling, Seidlin wrote that the state’s highest court will have to be the one to decide if that standard gets lowered.
The court finds that “the current state of the law in Iowa remains, at least for the time being, that some level of constitutional protection applies to women seeking abortion in Iowa, requiring an undue burden standard for analysis,” he wrote. “Therefore, there also remains an underlying justification for the Petitioners’ standing to assert the constitutional rights of women seeking abortions in Iowa.”
Reynolds responded to the ruling immediately, saying in a statement that she will “fight this all the way to the Iowa Supreme Court.”
Read the ruling here: